Late summer lassitude enervates the town. Dried seed pods pop in every field, and the desiccated grasses crunch underfoot, sending puffs of dust which barely drift in the still, hot air. The streams are sluggish and vaguely shadowed by hovering clouds of small insects. In front yards lining the empty streets, dogs and cats drowse in the flickering shade of doomed foliage. The evenings, though now much foreshortened, seem to drag. These days are like the weary final steps of a long journey. Then nightfall, accompanied by a soft, cool breeze, brings a foretaste of the destination not yet reached. Dusk brings a brief glimpse of the the bright crescent near the western horizon, the season's last moon. Just a few days after it passes the full, we will arrive at autumn. It feels as though it has taken ages.